The Moon

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The Moon

The Moon, also sometimes Luna and once, Dolly's Moon, was Earth's largest and only natural satellite. Its mass and gravitic relationship to Earth meant that it had a profound impact on ocean tides, and thus on Earth's weather, generally. It was the first extraterrestrial body on which humankind landed — outside of the times the Doctor or other aliens took individuals on special trips — and was the location of any number of colonies and space stations — perhaps most famously the so-called Moonbase itself.

It was used as a base from which to thwart alien invasions, like those by the Cybermen, (TV: The Moonbase) Ice Warriors (TV: The Seeds of Death) and the Silents. (TV: Day of the Moon) But, unbeknownst to most humans who lived on Earth until the year 2049, it was itself an alien species — the embryonic form of a gigantic, draconian creature — (TV: Kill the Moon) described by Alice O'Donnell, a native of the year 2119, as a "big bat". (TV: Before the Flood) Its hatching caused what astronaut Lundvik described as the worst natural disaster in Earth's history. Tides swelled, consuming whole cites. Then, after the creature hatched, it laid a new egg — a "new moon" — which seemed very like the one that it had replaced. Accordingly, unlike many other moons circling many other worlds, Earth's moon wasn't comprised of rocks or substantial mineral deposits, according to the Twelfth Doctor's understanding of a Mexican geological survey. Nor was it even a singular entity. (TV: Kill the Moon)

That said, the Twelfth Doctor's understanding of the true nature of the moon in 2049 was not apparently known or shared by others throughout the course of Earth's history. Various other accounts were known to exist which appeared to contradict the Time Lord's findings.

Iris Wildthyme owned a house on the Moon. (AUDIO: Dark Side)


Early history[[edit]]

By the reckoning of ArcHivist Farazea's 14 Planet Theory, what would become the Moon initially formed as a double planet with Mercury, Farazea observing that they were almost identical in composition and size. (AUDIO: Origins of the Cybermen)

Circa 2,000,000,000 BC, the Moon was covered in vast oceans and life. It was also much closer to the Earth, and was under vast gravitational pressures from the proximity of the Earth. As witnessed by the Sixth Doctor, Melanie Bush and Hebe Harrison, the Moon was home to a non-native species called the Gilleans who lived in their vast city. (AUDIO: The Tides of the Moon)

According to one account, around 100,000,000 BC, an alien species laid a gigantic egg which began orbiting the Earth. (TV: Kill the Moon)

Another account stated that the Moon originated from outside of the solar system; it was originally the moon of the Cthalctose homeworld around 60,000,000 BC. At that time it housed the Genesis of Cthalctose which was designed to terraform alien worlds (such as, in the future, Earth) into an environment capable of supporting their species. (PROSE: Eternity Weeps)

Another account stated that the Moon was formed from the remains of Theia when it collided with Earth. (PROSE: Moon Blink)

The Silurians went into hibernation because of the appearance of a "small planet" near Earth, the Silurian home planet, which their scientists calculated would draw off Earth's atmosphere, wiping out "all life". The Third Doctor concluded that this referred to the Moon, and realised that instead of drawing off the atmosphere, the Moon was captured in Earth's orbit. (TV: Doctor Who and the Silurians) The Third Doctor repeated the claim to Marc Marshall that the Silurians built the shelters when they thought the planet would "suck away" Earth's atmosphere as it rushed by. (PROSE: The Scales of Injustice) Conversely, the Fifth Doctor recalled that the Silurian astronomers predicted that Earth was about to be "struck" by the planet at the time, (PROSE: Warriors of the Deep) and the Eleventh Doctor described the trajectory of the planet the astronomers had predicted as a "crash course". (TV: Cold Blood)

The sudden arrival of the Moon between Earth and Mondas also upset the gravitational equilibrium of Mondas, causing it to escape its orbit and drift through space. (AUDIO: Spare Parts) While the life forms on the surface of Earth did not suffocate from a lack of air as predicted, the gravitational force of the Moon created huge tidal waves, caused the eruption of volcanoes, made earthquakes bring mountain ranges down, and caused cyclones to rage. Millions of humanity's ape ancestors drowned or were blown into rocks by the winds, but some survived and multiplied. According to this account, the Silurians first saw the Moon two years before it reached Earth. (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Cave-Monsters)

However, according to another account, the Moon was already in orbit around the Earth circa 450 million BC. Around this time, the Archaeons used caverns beneath the Moon to house vivariums. They seeded the Earth by firing red lightning from this cavern at the Earth, which already had the potential for life, but the lightning caused the "spark" to be engendered, and the vivariums were used to nurture the Earth under controlled conditions. The Archaeons, along with the First Doctor, Susan and Quadrigger Stoyn, were trapped in a stasis field when they tried taking the temporal stasis capacitor from the TARDIS. This account also suggested that only basic primitive life existed on the Earth. The Archaeons at the very least considered the evolution of humans to be an end result of their "experiment". (AUDIO: The Beginning)

After the Millennium War of 150 million BC, one of the few remnants of the Constructors of Destiny was the Midnight Cathedral on the dark side of the Moon. (PROSE: The Quantum Archangel)

16th century[[edit]]

In 1590, the Moon had Earth-normal gravity, an atmosphere, water, plants, animals and was inhabited by the Lunaries. That year, they invited ambassadors from every capital city in Europe to the Moon to decide with which nation they would form an alliance. The English delegation was transported by Iris Wildthyme in the Celestial Omnibus, while the other nations used their own spaceships. Iris' companion Tom was very confused by the seeming impossibility of it all, as he knew that the Moon in his time was a dead world, but Iris showed little concern and just accepted it. (PROSE: Minions of the Moon)

19th century[[edit]]

In 1872, the Sixth Doctor and Peri Brown visited the Mare Nectaris on the Moon, where they found a Kaveetch beacon. (AUDIO: The First Sontarans)

In 1878, as Queen Victoria watched, three British spacecraft - the Cygnus, the Draco and the Lynx - were launched in secret from rural Scotland. The subsequent expedition to the dark side of the moon resulted in the discovery of a lunar park erected by an unknown alien civilisation for the purpose of hunting. During the expedition's efforts to rescue their missing commander - aided by the Fifth Doctor, Turlough and (secretly) Kamelion - the park was destroyed after the death of the park's Warden. The last surviving inhabitants of the Park were the ruthless Vrall, who tricked the humans into bringing them to Earth only to subsequently be destroyed by the Doctor and his companions using weapons salvaged from the park. After Kamelion visited Victoria in disguise as Prince Albert, Victoria was convinced to end the British Imperial Spacefleet due to the potential dangers of space travel, the Doctor having concluded that Victorian mentality was ill-suited for the pressures of space travel at this time. (PROSE: Imperial Moon)

By 1888, Dolly was became the first woman on the Moon after the Eleventh Doctor accidentally took her there instead of arriving in Bognor. The Doctor later referred to the Moon as "Dolly's Moon". (PROSE: Hello! [+]Loading...["Hello! (short story)"]) However, on another occasion, the Eleventh Doctor claimed Martha Jones was the first woman on the Moon. (PROSE: The Doc's Side of the Moon [+]Loading...{"page":"47","1":"The Doc's Side of the Moon (short story)"})

In 1892, Strax claimed that he had "declared war on the Moon," asserting that it had gone unsuspected long enough to gain "an enormous tactical advantage," and that striking now would catch the "Moonites" off guard, though Jenny Flint claimed there was "no one living there." (TV: The Great Detective)

20th century[[edit]]

Early 20th century[[edit]]

The last Dalek flying saucer of the New Dalek Empire, (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) was hidden on the dark side of the moon in 1941. (TV: Victory of the Daleks)

Circa 1959, a species landed on the Moon and sent a transmission to Earth. They requested a meeting with the humans so they could share technology. The American government intercepted the transmission and started NASA's moon project to meet them. (PROSE: Blue Moon)

In the 1960s, the United States government built a moonbase on the far side of the Moon using alien technology. It was named after former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower. The moonbase was designed to contain a viable minimum population. In the event of a nuclear war, the plan was for its inhabitants to eventually return to Earth and rebuild human civilisation. It was destroyed by the Sixth Doctor on 23 November 1963. (AUDIO: 1963: The Space Race)

In 1966, Igrix intended to destroy the Moon. (COMIC: The Love Invasion)

On 27 January 1967, Earth's nations signed the Outer Space Treaty, which limited the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies for peaceful exploration. (PROSE: Time Traveller's Diary [+]Loading...["Time Traveller's Diary (novel)"])

The Apollo 11 landing[[edit]]

Main article: Apollo 11

According to most historical accounts, humans officially first set foot on the Moon on 20 July 1969. (PROSE: Blue Moon)

Following the Apollo landing[[edit]]

Contradicting this, one account shows three human astronauts landing on the Moon on 22 July 1970, apparently for the first time. They spotted the TARDIS. (COMIC: Moon Landing)

At some point after 1969, the Tenth Doctor intended to take Rose Tyler to the Moon, making her, unofficially, the first human female to set foot there, but this plan went awry. (PROSE: I Am a Dalek)

According to one account, Moon landings became routine in a fairly short while. (PROSE: Soldiers from Zolta)

In the 1970s, the newly-regenerated Fourth Doctor intended to take Harry Sullivan to the Moon, to prove to him that the TARDIS could travel in space. Instead, because of Harry's "messing around with the helmic regulator," they ended up on the Ark, millennia ahead of his intended destination. (TV: The Ark in Space)

The Cyber-Fleet in orbit of the Moon. (TV: Silver Nemesis)

Later 20th century[[edit]]

By the late 20th century, the Cybermen of the "Early CyberFaction" from Planet 14 had established a base on the dark side of the Moon. The base served as the staging area for a fleet poised to invade Earth. It also could fire missiles at approaching craft, such as the Doctor's TARDIS, which briefly materialised in space nearby. (TV: The Invasion, AUDIO: The Ultimate Cybermen)

In 1971, a Dalek craft landed on the Moon and captured several humans. Jeff Stone saw the remains of the craft in a museum in the Dalek capital city on Skaro in 2400. (COMIC: City of the Daleks)

In the 1970s, the Daleks established a base on the Moon and contacted Professor Pillbright. They offered him use of their disintegrator weapon in exchange for his servitude. The Third Doctor went to the Moon and destroyed their base with a neutron bomb. (COMIC: The Disintegrator)

Bolog had the whole Reptilios Invasion Fleet concealed on the dark side of the Moon, only for the Fourth Doctor to send them into orbit around the Sun using a banana. (COMIC: Death to the Doctor!)

Supergirl on her bike in front of the Moon. (WC: Supergirl Meets E.T.)

Supergirl once rode a cyan bike in front of the Moon at night during the opening of an episode of her show, Meet That Hero!, on which she talked about E.T. and the similarities between their histories. (WC: Supergirl Meets E.T.)

Another Moonbase was established by time travelling CyberNeomorphs, using a stolen timeship from Hatre Sedtry, in 1985. (TV: Attack of the Cybermen, PROSE: Attack of the Cybermen, AUDIO: The Ultimate Cybermen )

In 1986, an Earth expedition visited the Moon where they encountered the original Cybermen from Mondas. (TV: The Tenth Planet)

In 1988, the Isomorph Cyber-Fleet orbited the Moon and waited for the Cyber-Leader, already on Earth, to acquire the Nemesis so that the Fleet could land, conquer Earth and convert the planet into New Mondas. The Nemesis, sent to rendezvous with the Fleet, exploded and destroyed the entire fleet. (TV: Silver Nemesis, AUDIO: The Ultimate Cybermen)

In 1992, the Timewyrm created a replica of Victorian-era Cheldon Bonniface on the Moon to trap the Seventh Doctor. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Revelation)

21st century[[edit]]


In the 21st century, the Moon was considered neutral ground under galactic law. This meant law-enforcement agents such as the Judoon, who would have broken galactic law to conduct their affairs on Earth, had free rein to do so on its satellite.

The Royal Hope Hospital finds itself on the Moon. (TV: Smith and Jones)

Accordingly, in the 2000s,[nb 1] the Royal Hope Hospital was transported from London to the Moon with an H2O scoop by Judoon searching for a Plasmavore murderer. (TV: Smith and Jones)

In the 2000s,[nb 2] the Moon nearly collided with the Earth as part of Mr Smith's plan to destroy Earth using Luke Smith, whose natural power of telekinesis a device named MITRE had amplified. Earth's weather was affected worldwide. However, with Mr Smith "reprogrammed" by a computer virus, the moon slowly went back. (TV: The Lost Boy) The movement of the Moon caused the Earth's, the Moon's and the Sun's orbits to be in a mess. Clyde Langer and Mr Smith had to set the orbits right and did so shortly afterwards. (GAME: Earth, Sun and Moon)

In the 2000s,[nb 3] Earth was relocated to the Medusa Cascade by the Daleks. The Moon remained behind, though somehow maintaining its position until Earth was returned. It then resumed orbiting Earth. (TV: The Stolen Earth/Journey's End)

The Eleventh Doctor first travelled with his newly regenerated TARDIS to the Moon. (TV: The Eleventh Hour)

At some point, the Eleventh Doctor arrived with Rory Williams, near the US flag left by Apollo 11, and set up two lawn chairs to enjoy a couple of beers. They were trying to navigate the TARDIS back to London, 17 October 1814, and had made many stops along the way. While there, the TARDIS provided an air shell.

The pair later returned to the same spot, and the Doctor set up a temporary air shell while the TARDIS was elsewhere, in sleep mode, recovering. The Doctor and Rory set up camp and built a fire this time, roasting marshmallows and hot dogs while they waited. When the TARDIS finally returned, Rory was sleeping on the ground in a sleeping bag, and the Doctor was reading a book. (COMIC: The Doctor and the Nurse)

Human colonisation of the Moon[[edit]]

Daniel Eldred's rocket attempts a moon landing, crewed by the Second Doctor, Zoe and Jamie. (TV: The Seeds of Death)

According to Greta, the first lunar colony was Giant Leap Base. Some time after its construction, Dr Maguire discovered the stasis field and the Archaeon cavern, unfreezing the First Doctor, Susan, Stoyn and the Archaeons from time. The Archaeons considered their seeding of the planet a failure; they discovered their idea of order and formal beauty was disrupted, and felt that life had run "rampant" through their "garden". They attempted to "purge" all life from the planet and on the Moon with their cannon. The humans struck back with missiles which destroyed the cannon and breached the atmosphere of the cavern. The Archaeons were pulled into the vacuum and the First Doctor and Susan left Stoyn behind as they escaped in the TARDIS. (AUDIO: The Beginning)

At some point, a group of scientists established a quantum tunnel linking Base Diana, a secret military base on the moon with part of the Nevada Desert. This base was being used to carry out mind experiments on dangerous criminals. (PROSE: Apollo 23)

By 2010, there was a Moonbase operated by UNIT. Dr. Shaw was stationed here at the time. (TV: Death of the Doctor)

By 7 June 2015, when the Fifth Doctor and Turlough visited it, humans had established Moon Village One. While there, they stopped a pair of Dryrth criminals looking for treasure left on the Moon by their people. (COMIC: The Lunar Strangers)

In the early 21st century, humans found evidence of the oceans that once covered the Moon. (AUDIO: The Tides of the Moon)

In 2021, the Seventh Doctor noted that the Moon was "pretty much [run]" by China. (AUDIO: The Harvest)


Lundvik and Courtney Woods look out upon the surface of the Moon in 2049. (TV: Kill the Moon)

In 2039, the crew of Minera Luna San Pedro, a Mexican moonbase, founded to search for minerals, disappeared. By the year 2049, giant vicious red and black spider-like creatures with sharp teeth inhabited the Moon, living in the caves on the surface and killing every astronaut visiting the Moon, and covering moonbases in web. The Twelfth Doctor, Clara Oswald, Courtney Woods and Lundvik discovered these creatures on a mission to find out why the gravity had increased, with Courtney managing to kill one. They were connected to the organism that had been growing for millions of years inside the Moon, which hatched soon after. It laid another egg, which replaced the original Moon. The original moon then flew off to roam all of space. (TV: Kill the Moon) To the general populace of Earth, this event would be, in the words of 2119 native Alice O'Donnell, remembered as the time when "the Moon [exploded] and the big bat [came] out". (TV: Before the Flood)

Later 21st century[[edit]]

In 2050, the tenth German moon mission took place. (TV: The Waters of Mars)

Some time before the Bowie Base One mission in 2058, the notable space pioneer, Adelaide Brooke, became the first female Briton to land on the Moon. (TV: The Waters of Mars)

The human moonbase in 2070. (TV: The Moonbase)

Since the 2050s, a Moonbase housed the Gravitron, a machine that regulated Earth's weather. In 2070, Telosian Cybermen tried to invade and control it. (TV: The Moonbase) This base was later refurbished as the central T-Mat relay, co-ordinating T-Mat on Earth. A T-Mat link enabled a person to travel from Earth to the Moon in seconds, until a group of Ice Warriors decided to sabotage the relay. (TV: The Seeds of Death)

In 2094, the Eighth Doctor and Fitz Kreiner visited the Moon. (PROSE: Growing Higher)

22nd century[[edit]]

By 2144, the Icelandic government had established a lunar colony where they shipped their criminals. Inspector Jill Sveinsdóttir almost sentenced the Fifth Doctor and Vislor Turlough to a 30 year sentence on the lunar colony when she believed them to be responsible for a series of murders committed by the Bratanian Shroud. (AUDIO: Repeat Offender)

From the 2150s to the late 2180s, many humans were left on the moon without access to the Earth due to the 22nd century Dalek invasion of Earth. Susan Campbell and, to a lesser extent, her son Alex were a part of several official public functions involving the return of the stranded colonists. (AUDIO: An Earthly Child, Quinnis)

Later history[[edit]]

In 2367, the Eleventh Doctor implied that there were several species living on the Moon. (TV: Dinosaurs on a Spaceship)

In 2400, the Daleks blocked the Moon's scanners to prevent their invasion of the solar system from being detected. (COMIC: Invasion of the Daleks) After the invasion was defeated, a group of Daleks planned to use their Megla-Ray and the old nuclear bombs dumped on the Moon to destroy Earth, but were defeated by Jeff, Andy and Mary Stone. (COMIC: Battle for the Moon)

By 2540, the Moon served as a penal colony for dissidents against the war between the Earth Empire and the Draconian Empire. The war was later resolved through peace talks, presumably leaning to the dismantlement of the colony. (TV: Frontier in Space)

Luna University was founded by 2643. (PROSE: Continuity Errors)

By the 27th century, the Moon had a large city, which Bernice Summerfield described as "one of the most impressive cities in human space." Half of the city was a theme park. (AUDIO: Resurrecting the Past)

By the time Erin Grant, born 2847, began her higher education, the Earth Empire's prestigious Naval Academy had been set up on the Moon. (GAME: "Player Characters" [+]Part of The Iytean Menace, Loading...{"namedpart":"Player Characters","1":"The Iytean Menace (game)"})

Circa the 30th century, Earth scientists were digging for resources on the moon as Earth had begun to run out. (PROSE: The Dust of Ages)

In 5123, River Song graduated from Luna University with a degree in archaeology. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)


Circa the 53rd century, the Threshold, who had a longstanding base inside the Moon, had established Wormwood, a replica of a late 19th century American frontier town on the surface. They maintained there a superweapon known as the Eye of Disharmony. The Eighth Doctor's companions Izzy Sinclair and Feyde sabotaged the Eye of Disharmony and the resulting feedback destroyed the satellite. (COMIC: Wormwood)

Other moons[[edit]]

In the time of the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire, the Earth had five moons. A penal colony still existed at this time. (TV: The Long Game, Bad Wolf)

Undated events[[edit]]

The Ship, in trying to get back to Earth, may have landed on the Moon. (GAME: Journey Back to Earth [+]Loading...["Journey Back to Earth (game)"])


Locations on the Moon included Mare Fecunditatis, Sea of Tranquility, Sea of Nectar, Sea of Ingenuity and Sea of Crises. (TV: Kill the Moon)

Effects on Earth[[edit]]

Werewolves, such as the Host, were transformed from their human form into their wolf form under moonlight. The Tenth Doctor, through a telescope at Torchwood House, concentrated moonlight into a laser-like beam which killed the Host. This saved Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. (TV: Tooth and Claw)

Gravity of the Moon had connections with tides on Earth. Around 2039, its increased gravitational force led to the flooding of cities. (TV: Kill the Moon)


When the TARDIS landed on Vortis, Ian Chesterton at first thought that they were on the Moon. (TV: The Web Planet)

After the Twelfth Doctor's mind was connected to a mind scythe, the "holiday snaps" the Doctor showed Kygon Brox included the Moon hatching. (COMIC: The Instruments of War)

Behind the scenes[[edit]]

Doctor in a Dash[[edit]]

The lunar surface appears in the online game Doctor In A Dash as the setting of Level 3 where, as with all levels, the Doctor's TARDIS (the player) races against a Dalek flying saucer, a Judoon rocket, and a Slitheen craft to find a Space-Time Manipulator. Satellites act as obstacles to the ships.



  1. According to the episode The Sound of Drums, Martha Jones' present day during series 3 of Doctor Who takes place over a six-day period, with the Saxon Master being elected three days after Smith and Jones, and the Toclafane invading Earth five days after Smith and Jones. However, sources differ on which dates these stories are set. According to PROSE: The Paradox Moon, the Toclafane invasion happens on 23 June 2007, placing the events of Smith and Jones on 18 June. According to AUDIO: Hysteria, Smith and Jones takes place in 2008, with a UNIT mission log in AUDIO: Recruits referring to the recovery of moon rocks from Royal Hope Hospital in March 2008. A newspaper clipping in PROSE: The Secret Lives of Monsters places Smith and Jones on a Sunday 4 June, thus placing the Toclafane invasion on Friday 9 June. In the real world, these dates do not fall on a Sunday and Friday in either 2007 or 2008.
  2. No on screen date is given for the first two series of The Sarah Jane Adventures, outside of The Day of the Clown from the second series being set shortly after 9 October in an undisclosed year. While Donna Noble's present from the fourth series of Doctor Who is set around the same time as the first series of The Sarah Jane Adventures, and The Temptation of Sarah Jane Smith from the second series of The Sarah Jane Adventures is explicitly described as being set a year after Whatever Happened to Sarah Jane? from the first series, Doctor Who's fourth series is not consistently dated, with TV: The Fires of Pompeii, TV: The Waters of Mars, and AUDIO: SOS setting the present of the 13 regular episodes in 2008 (heavily implied by TV: The Star Beast and TV: The Giggle as well), and PROSE: Beautiful Chaos setting them in about April to June 2009.
  3. The present day of Doctor Who's fourth series is not consistently dated, with TV: The Fires of Pompeii, TV: The Waters of Mars, and AUDIO: SOS setting the present of the 13 regular episodes in 2008 (heavily implied by TV: The Star Beast and TV: The Giggle as well), and PROSE: Beautiful Chaos setting them in about April to June 2009.